Review: A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

Star rating: 4 ⭐ / 5 ⭐

Synopsis: from StoryGraph

Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.

Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.

With more than a million copies sold of her beloved Throne of Glass series, Sarah J. Maas’s masterful storytelling brings this second book in her seductive and action-packed series to new heights.

General information: This book was published in May 2016 by Bloomsbury USA Children’s.

My thoughts:

Okay, I get the Rhysand hype now.

Am I on that hype train? Unfortunately, yes. I know, I know! I’m as surprised as everyone else. I was so prepared to be disgusted by the romance with Rhysand but I actually, genuinely like his character. Sue me.

I really loved the found family part of this book with the Court of Dreams. All the characters were interesting and I liked learning more about their relationships and personalities.

I also really liked all the focus on trauma and what it can do to a person- I was prepared to complain about the sudden reversal of Tamlin into a villain but it felt believable to me. Stuff happens, people change, especially when they’re put through everything that happened at the end of the first book. I thought the focus on Feyre’s poor mental health (and poor physical health, at some points) was realistic and I liked seeing her come out of that.

I was a little confused by the plot, at points- sometimes it felt a tad meandering, and Maas is given to infodumps at times that I tend to want to skip over. I thought this book was a good sequel though, as it expanded on the consequences of the ending of the first book in a way that I liked a lot.

This is also way (wayyyy) longer than most of the books that I read, but I still managed to finish it in about 3 days, so kudos to the author for keeping me engaged the whole time! I was totally immersed in the world and characters. A series hasn’t gripped me like this in a long, long time.

Overall, I’m starting to begrudgingly recommend this series! I think this book was much better-written than the first and I could hardly put it down.

Content warnings: Trauma, discussions of past traumatic events (violence, death, etc), mentions of sexual assault, sexual content in general (skip chapter 55 if you’re not into sex scenes), emotional abuse/toxic relationship, mental illness, violence, death, and more (check out the StoryGraph page linked above for a more detailed listing!)

Have you read this book? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Star rating: 3 ⭐ / 5 ⭐

Synopsis: from StoryGraph

Feyre’s survival rests upon her ability to hunt and kill – the forest where she lives is a cold, bleak place in the long winter months. So when she spots a deer in the forest being pursued by a wolf, she cannot resist fighting it for the flesh. But to do so, she must kill the predator and killing something so precious comes at a price …

Dragged to a magical kingdom for the murder of a faerie, Feyre discovers that her captor, his face obscured by a jewelled mask, is hiding far more than his piercing green eyes would suggest. Feyre’s presence at the court is closely guarded, and as she begins to learn why, her feelings for him turn from hostility to passion and the faerie lands become an even more dangerous place. Feyre must fight to break an ancient curse, or she will lose him forever.

General information: This book was published in May 2015 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens.

My thoughts:

Okay, I can see where the hype comes from now.

I legitimately enjoyed this book when I thought I wouldn’t! Before I started, I thought I was going to DNF but no, something kept me reading all 415 pages (longer than most books I read these days). I even finished it in about two days! So why the three stars, then?

Well, I’ve heard before that this is young adult fantasy and also that it was meant to be for adults. I can see the arguments both ways- there were some incredibly dark, adult parts, but the writing style felt more geared towards YA. It felt… undecided. Like the book wasn’t sure which category it wanted to be in, either.

There were also some incredibly info-dumpy parts- there’s one part where the entirety of the curse is explained to Feyre over the course of a few pages, using dialogue from a minor character. I found myself skimming those parts and wishing there had been a better way to work the information into the plot. I’ve heard that the later books do this as well so I’m not entirely surprised.

Also, I’ve been spoiled on the love interest for the later books, which made reading this one… rage-inducing, to say the least. This guy tortures the main character, but later on in the series, they’re supposed to fall in love? I was reading the last 100 pages with a “WTF” look on my face the whole time.

It kept me turning pages, though. I wanted to know what would happen. Like I said, I genuinely enjoyed this book, despite its flaws. I can see why it’s so hyped! I really enjoyed most of the characters, especially Lucien, who really stuck out to me for some reason.

I wouldn’t say this book was objectively good but damn if I didn’t like it. Would I recommend this to someone? Probably not. Will I still get the entire series from the library and read them? Yup.

Content warnings: Death, torture, sexual content, violence, toxic relationship, blood/gore, slavery, and probably more that I’m missing. There’s some really dark stuff in this book so skip it if that’s not your thing.

Have you read this series? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!